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Digital Divide and Rural Communities: Practical Solutions and Policies

Digital Divide and Rural Communities: Practical Solutions and Policies
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Author(s): John Garofalakis (Research Academic Computer Technology Institute, Greece) and Andreas Koskeris (Research Academic Computer Technology Institute, Greece)
Copyright: 2010
Pages: 23
Source title: Handbook of Research on Overcoming Digital Divides: Constructing an Equitable and Competitive Information Society
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Enrico Ferro (Istituto Superiore Mario Boella (ISMB), Italy), Yogesh K. Dwivedi (Swansea University, UK), J. Ramon Gil-Garcia (Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económicas (CIDE), Mexico) and Michael D. Williams (Swansea University, UK)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-699-0.ch021

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Abstract

During the last years, due to the wide spread of World Wide Web (WWW), the Internet has become one of the most valuable and effective communications media and the most inclusive source of information. However, in many cases the difficulties of establishing universal effective access could serve to reinforce current patterns of social exclusion and produce barriers to balanced development instead of supporting it. World widely there is a rising concern over the so-called “digital divide”–a term that refers to the gap existing in the opportunities to access advanced information and communication technologies between geographic areas or by individuals at different socioeconomic levels. The experience shows that specialized initiatives are needed for disadvantaged areas in order to anticipate expansion of current digital divide. This chapter is focusing on the specific instance of digital divide occurring in rural territories, and examines the ways to foster digital culture among citizens, utilizing a specific initiative (the so called “Telecentres”).

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